Making the Most of the Perfect #MontanaMoment

In early 2014, the Montana Office of Tourism embarked on an ambitious website redesign project. “Our previous website was custom-built,” says Caitlin Hassler, Social Media Coordinator for the State of Montana. “It wasn’t responsive. We wanted more agility, a CMS so we could update the site’s content regularly, and we needed it to be mobile-compatible.”

The Montana marketing team also wanted to build on the successes it had achieved in its social channels. “The website had fallen a bit behind,” says Hassler. “We had strong successes with our hashtag, #MontanaMoment, in both the social space and the consumer marketing and advertising space. We wanted to integrate social and the new site.”

Working with Razorfish, the Montana team created a new website designed to meet these requirements. “When we started getting into the nitty-gritty of how to integrate social into the site, Razorfish suggested a Stackla grid to display all of our great user-generated content right on the homepage. The social hub would give us a place to curate the best new #MontanaMoment photos.”

Beyond simply improving its web infrastructure, Hassler’s team aimed to inspire people to visit the state. “It’s hard to take a bad photo in Montana,” Hassler laughs. “Even a non-professional photographer with the most basic camera phone can take a photo that captures the beauty and essence of the state.”

Strong engagement with the #MontanaMoment hashtag means that the marketing team often has far more high-quality content to choose from than it can publish on the site. “Everyone who uses the hashtag wants to be Instagram-famous and get featured on our site,” Hassler says. “But there’s only so much content we can publish every day.”

The State of Montana also used Stackla to power live social displays at its March 2015 Governor’s Conference. For Hassler, the ability to curate and moderate content from multiple social networks in real time was the key to success. “It’s really important for us to make sure that the right content—content that’s on brand and inspiring to our standards—gets published, especially for a live display,” says Hassler. “I’d used a competing social curation tool in the past—but it didn’t give us any control over which content went up on the screen. And at a live event, that’s a harrowing experience.”

“Bringing Stackla into our website has been a great experience overall,” says Hassler. “Stackla has helped make all the pieces of our marketing ecosystem more integrated.”